It is that time of year again. If you don’t know what the 12 Days thing is, then go read Scamp’s call to arms. Basically, it is just an excuse to make 12 posts.
I have done this 12 Day thing twice before and I have sort of built my own set of guidelines for it.
My posts are not really in any meaningful order. There is a loose chronological order (by anime air date) but that’s it. I don’t necessarily like my #1 anime more than my #12 nor my #12 more than my #1.
More importantly, instead of focusing on 12 or so memorable moments like most people, I prefer to focus on memorable anime. Each post then becomes a simple collection of memorable moments in that anime.
I do this primarily because I don’t really blog much anime throughout the year. These posts are sort of my lost shot at saying something good about anime I really liked.
All that said, I do break my own guidelines quite often but we will get to that when the time comes. For now, let us recall Winter’s hot blooded blockbuster, JOJO!
I already made a 12 Days post on Jojo (as well as several other Jojo posts) but because a good chunk of the anime (not to mention the better chunk) aired in 2013, I was unable to cover some of its best moments.
I do apologize though. I haven’t rewatched JoJo since it finished airing early this year so I have forgotten many of the memorable moments.
Most Memorable Moment
Caesar vs Wham
In a world full of cute girls tripping on perfectly flat floors, it is always great when we get a great fight. It is even better when you have a fight that is infused with incredible tactics, split second decisions, incredible background music and an oh so satisfyingly depressing ending.
The Caesar vs Wham fight was all of those and perhaps even more. It was a fight between two incredibly strong warriors but it was less about the techniques they used and more about how they used them.
Caesar’s lens bubble thing was an incredibly smart move. He kept launching disks at Wham and in the process of blocking/dodging them, Wham did not realize that Caesar had filled the hallway with his bubble lenses. That brilliant bit of thinking landed Caesar the match but a single misstep, a single miscalculation was enough to cost Caesar his life.
And that is probably the most incredible thing in this fight. It was a fight where both participants took advantage of every weakness and every opening to win. And these were split second decisions made without hesitation.
Wham’s eventual victory was even foreshadowed earlier. When Caesar cut his legs, Wham fell back but he didn’t try to stop his fall because he wanted to use Caesar as a launch pad. It was that kind of thinking and experience that let Wham win. He didn’t win because he was stronger than Caesar; he won because he was a far more experienced warrior.
After taking the sandstorm, Caesar got back up. In a more naive Shonen, this would have been the point where he’d get a random powerup but naturally that didn’t happen here. He got back up not because he wanted to win or live but because he wanted to die without regret.
That was incredible.
Both JoJo and Lisa Lisa suffered a heavy blow when they realized Caesar was gone. JoJo got visibly upset at Caesar’s death and then got angry that Lisa Lisa wasn’t upset only to realize a second later that she was in fact very upset.
Like any self-respecting protagonist, JoJo got over Caesar’s death. He made a promise to live on and carry Caesar’s will. Then as if to clear away any doubt of Caesar’s demise, the sun came out.
JoJo and Lisa Lisa had accepted Caesar’s death but the finality of it had not been made clear to them. Seeing Caesar’s blood creep out from under debris drove the point home. There was no use in putting on facades or fake shows of strength anymore. Caesar was dead.
Seeing two incredibly strong characters cry their hearts out in enemy territory was definitely one of this year’s most memorable moments and it was made all the better because of that incredible background music.
Other Memorable Moments
There are probably far too many great scenes in JoJo for me to list here but let’s see if I can list a few things.
The incredible poses are as much a part of JoJo’s aesthetic as the fashionable clothing, the colorful visuals and the overly muscular men. JoJo just wouldn’t be JoJo without these poses.
If you don’t like the poses then you probably don’t like JoJo. If you don’t like JoJo then you probably don’t like the poses.
There is very little to say about the opening and the ending at this point. Both the BloodyStream opening and the Roundabout ending have become iconic sequences and will be fondly remembered/listened to for a long time.
But you know, the rest of the background music was incredible as well. For example, the scene right after Caesar’s death featured an incredible score.
Cars gets defeated
I already talked about Cars’ defeat here so I am going to say much more but that was an incredibly fun, action packed fight. It was a great way to end the 2nd JoJo season.
Cars kills a squirrel
Given how he ended up, it is easy to forget that Cars actually started out as a seemingly cold, constantly calculating individual. He had a strange personality. He was nowhere near as eager to fight as Wham or AC/DC nor was he particularly interested in humans.
He spent his time working towards his eventual goal in near silence. And yet, this seemingly cold individual often showed compassion for living things like little animals and plants.
When he changed into the “ultimate being”, the first thing Cars did was turn his hand into a squirrel.
That squirrel then went and flirted with a wild squirrel before viciously eating her. It then proceeded to attack and kill many of the soldiers.
The rapid squirrel was not only a great way to show how Cars’ had physically changed but more importantly, it demonstrated just how self-absorbed he had become.
He no longer cared the slightest about little, cute animals or any other living that for that matter.
In that last section, I talked about how Cars’ changed but there were breaks in his cold persona even earlier on in the anime. If memory serves me correctly, the first time we saw him act differently was when he fell down the cliff after a brief skirmish with JoJo.
Cars was laughing. That was unexpected.
Joseph was an excellent protagonist. He used his head when brawling and perhaps more importantly, he didn’t let things like pride or honor cloud his decision making. It is what made him a formidable enemy. He was a far more entertaining character than his grandfather.
I really liked the backstories given to certain characters. I was quite fond of the sad Lisa Lisa backstory (I did not think for a second that she was Joseph’s mother) as well as Caesar’s slightly ridiculous but still sad story.
Speedwagon was not only instrumental to the story by providing much needed assistance through his SpeedWagon foundation but more importantly, he provided commentary the whole time.
It is hard to believe that if and when Stardust Crusaders airs, it won’t have Speedwagon. I will miss his enthusiastic, but totally obvious commentary.
ACDC and innuendo
p.s. I wrote a post on that ACDC fight.
Stroheim may have been a Nazi but he was clearly awesome.